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      Study Strategies and Top Skills for College Students

      Study Strategies and Top Skills for College Students

      Congratulations!! The big day has finally arrived, and you’re officially a college student. You start attending online/offline classes, excited by this big step you’ve taken toward your career dream. You sit in class fascinated by everything you learn and spend the rest of the day thinking how fortunate you are that you get to spend the next few years learning so many incredible new things by incredibly talented professors.

      And then you have a quiz or an exam at the end of the week, and you added that, as excited as you were when your first day of college. And the results came and you realize that you weren’t able to translate your enthusiasm into high grades. If that’s happened to you then you’re not alone 🙂

      Students everywhere are facing the same challenge. After all, studying in a college/university is more intense, and it requires building new skills and following proven study strategies that we usually don’t learn in high school. Most students have been taught to lock themselves in a room and study a topic for hours until they master it, however, new study methods that may seem illogical at first are proving more effective than methods that have been used for years. 

      Continue reading to learn about effective study strategies and skills that a college student must have!

      Top study strategies for college students

      Take good notes: Taking good notes involves dating each entry and keeping notes for different classes separate from each other. In addition, write down anything your instructor writes on the board. If the instructor took the time to write it out, he or she considers it important. If possible, try to take your notes in outline form. The organization of ideas is as important as the content of those ideas, especially when it comes to learning exam material.

      Get enough sleep: Sleep is essential when it comes to effective study habits. When you’re tired, you think more slowly and tend not to retain as much information. If you want to get the most out of your study sessions, make sure you get enough sleep.

      Join a study group: When working through a difficult problem set or assignment, a study group can prove very valuable. You can’t be together in person right now. But there are no laws preventing you from forming an online study group, right? 

      Find your classmates online and set a designated time each week to meet online and quiz each other. Use a free service such as Facebook’s video chat option, Zoom, or Skype.

      Dividing the work amongst your peers is also an effective method for reducing your workload and ensuring that you understand the material.

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      Teach Others: A great way to get a deep understanding of new material is by teaching it to others.

      If you have a friend you can study with, perhaps even someone who’s having challenges with the material, you can offer them to study together. When you teach others, you get a chance to better understand the materials yourself. This will force you to review the work often, think about the material, and take part in question-and-answer sessions. Plus, you’ll be helping out a friend or maybe even making a little money on the side for your time.

      Find your Zone: Obviously, you can’t go to the coffee shop or the cafe more often with social distancing rules still in place. Doing so would be irresponsible, and it might even get you in a scuffle with local law enforcement. But this doesn’t mean you can’t get out of the house. When looking at the same four walls of your bedroom is driving you repeatedly into the arms of Youtube or Netflix, it’s time for a change of scenery. Grab your laptop or your printed notes and find a quiet place to study. One of our top study skills for college students includes getting out of the house and experiencing a change of scenery, such as:

      • A quiet picnic table in a sparsely populated park
      • Your own balcony, patio, or backyard
      • A different room in your own house, such as the family room or den
      • On a bench in a deserted garden
      • Inside your car, parked on your own college campus

      Read to Yourself Out Loud: Some people memorize best through sound. If you identify yourself as one of them, try reading your course materials to yourself out loud. You can read to yourself out loud at home, and you can also record yourself. Then, take the recording and listen to it. Sometimes you need to hear things more than once, to fully remember or understand them.

      Top skills for college students:

      Networking skills: College is an ideal environment to meet new people – you bump into potential friends, again and again, thanks to class projects, menacing midterms, and random parties. Out in the real world, getting to know interesting folks and maintaining these relationships takes a whole new skill set. Networking is unarguably the most effective job search strategy. So, it’s only wise to pay attention to how to network effectively.

      Soft skills: Imagine a scenario that a person has an excellent record of academia but he reached 15 mins late to the interview venue and touched his lips continuously while answering questions then BOOM, he’s out!! Recruiters won’t give you a chance if you lack in your soft skills. Excellent time management, and good communication while talking to strangers is absolutely necessary when you’re working in a big firm.

      These are skills that can be used to convey ideas and messages in an effective manner. These skills can also be used to handle serious situations while taking care of the overall scenario. Soft Skills help to grow a powerful personality. It helps to stand out and to move forward in your everyday activities to reach your goals. 

      Top 5 Soft Skills to Focus in College:

      • Communication Skills
      • Critical Thinking & Problem Solving
      • Financial Planning and Money Management
      • Time Management
      • Taking Constructing Criticism

      Adaptive Thinking Skills: In the digital age, things are changing at exponential rates. By the time students come out of college, a better version of softwares are being used rather than the one taught in the college days. Future employers will need to continuously adapt to changing conditions as well as be able to learn new things quickly and efficiently. We need our students to learn how to LEARN.

      Exam Skills: A big part of college assessment comes in the form of exams. So you can be great in class learn lots and if you struggle at sitting exams you can still struggle to get good grades. So it’s important to prepare properly for any exam, make sure you keep your notes in good order and that they make sense to you, and are easily accessible. Create a study timetable with the aims and goals of what you should have achieved and what dates you aim to achieve them by. When studying, and especially when you are taking sample papers, try and do so in conditions that as closely as possible mimic the exam hall, so no music or phones or other distractions.

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      Leadership skills: While it is important to be able to function in a group, it is also important to demonstrate leadership skills when necessary. Both in college and the workforce, the ability to assume the lead when the situation calls for it is a necessity for anyone who hopes to draw upon their knowledge of “hard” skills in a position of influence.

      The best way for you to develop leadership skills is to search for opportunities on your campus and community. This could include becoming involved in student government, organizations, or volunteering.

      Personal branding skills: PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) defines personal branding as “what you’re known for and how people experience you. It’s about bringing who you are to what you do and how you do it.”

      When applying to higher studies or jobs, students don’t just need to consider their paper application and how they come across at interview. In a competitive market for the best universities or high paying jobs, a personal brand can strengthen an application and also lay the foundation for future employment opportunities.

      Branding takes time. The earlier someone begins branding themselves, the better! And what else than college is the better place to start?

      There are simple ways that college students can begin branding themselves for their futures.

      • Buy a domain name on your name
      • Design a logo to given identity to your site online
      • Start writing blogs on topics related to your interests and chosen career
      • Showcase your projects
      • List services based on your area of expertise
      • Be more active in LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social channels

      Thanks for scrolling up to here. See you in the next article! Until then Happy Reading & Learning 🙂

      References: 1, 2, 3

      Author: Rao Purna

      I’m a Graduate, Currently working with Stoodnt as Marketing & Customer Support Executive. I’m into Digital Marketing, UX Designing, Visual Designing (Graphic designing, UI), Blogging and Video Editing. If you have any queries, drop a mail at [email protected]


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